Aston Villa, because of Trezeguet’s brace, held alive their slim hopes for survival with a 2-0 home win over Crystal Palace.

Their first victory in 11 Premier League games didn’t come quickly or without controversy, as VAR overturned what looked like the Palace ‘s early score. Mamadou Sakho bundled in a free-kick but was disallowed for handball with a lot of thought replays which then showed that the ball hit his shoulder.

Villa was the better side after that reprieve, though not producing much in the way of free-flowing football, and the Egyptian Trezeguet gave them the lead in the first-half stoppage time, finishing a side-foot volley after being left unmarked at the back post.

Jack Grealish believed he had received a penalty two minutes after the restart but VAR intervened again and found that he had stepped on Patrick van Aanholt ‘s foot in an accident very close to Bruno Fernandes midweek penalty for Villa.

Trezeguet soon doubled the lead to ease the fears of another come-out defeat for the hosts, pushing the ball into the net after Palace failed to handle a hopeful header back into their box. Palace created some opportunities late, with Van Aanholt and ex-Villa man Christian Benteke both wasting it, but it was too late because they were underwhelmed.

The win takes Villa from safety on to 30 points and four, while they have a much lower goal difference between them than both Watford and West Ham United. Both have three games left to play.


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